A Day Beer Trip to Kitsap County, by Shaqfeasel
I did a little trip over to Kitsap to visit a few breweries. First stop was in Bremerton to visit Der Blokken Brewing. Der Blokken is a brewpub tucked away in a sleepy neighborhood. I am always fond of breweries that can find a spot in a neighborhood as I believe they add value and charm. The pub has a real cozy feeling with dark wood floors, a small 8 seat bar, and several tables. In the middle of the dining area there are two 7BBL fermenters.
I bellied up to the bar and ordered a sampler tray and a Kip and Fritz (a chicken strip with fries cheese and stout gravy). As I started on sampler one, texting notes, and snapping pictures a fellow sat down next to me and asked me about the beers. He introduced himself as the brewer and proceeded to check my beers. I was the first patron of the day and he stated his beer lines were long and wanted to make sure I got good samples. He ended up re-pouring most of them to ensure I had a fresh sample. I asked a barrage of geeky beer questions about his brewery and he obliged with very candid and informative answers. The beers were all very good but his black and double black Ales stood out. I am not sure they fit in a category of stout or porter, but I have never cared about that anyway. My food was very good and I could have ordered a glass of the stout gravy.
A mile away was the new Silver City Brewing production brewery that opened in late 2010. They are currently in the process of building a tasting room; for now they are only selling swag and 22 oz bottles. I told the gal that I was from Snohomish and she gave me a nice tour of the facility. Multiple 4BBL fermenters and a massive 80BBL fermenter dominate the warehouse. The brewery is also is working on barrel aging beers and have several barrels aging some tasty goodness. The new tap room should be ready in the Spring of 2012.
A short drive up to Poulsbo took me to Sound Brewery, a small warehouse facility with a quaint little tasting room. It housed a small bar and about 4-5 tables with a LCD screen playing the football game. Sound brewing is focused on making beers as authentic as possible, sourcing ingredients to make them true to style. European Hops, sugars from Belgium, Marris Otter grain are some of the examples. I ordered a sampler tray and I was truly amazed. Never been one to jump on the Belgian bandwagon, but I will be keeping an eye out for their 22oz bottles and taps. Of course not all their beers are Belgian style as their IPA is wonderful.
Just a short 5 minute drive away was Slippery Pig Brewing. Follow the signs down a long gravel road and find a parking spot. Take a peek at the Pigs and dodge the chickens to the outdoor shelter of Slippery Pig. The beers here are not mainstream (the website promotes a 200IBU rhubarb IPA). It is a homebrewer gone mad and living the dream. The shelter has 4 or so picnic tables and several outdoor heaters to take off the chill. I ordered a small sample tray. Standouts were a Cascadian Dark ale (nothing shocking here) and a Doug Fir IPA. Yes, Douglas Fir, and I liked it. Brewers like the taste of a Simcoe Hopped IPA because of the hints of Pine, so why fake it? Why not add the resins of a Doug Fir? I say it worked, and I would order it again.
Hopefully in the summer, I can make a trip back to this area and also visit Valholl Brewing. I thoroughly enjoyed my trip to the Westside…